I think we all have our shameful parenting truths. I know there are things that I do that aren't necessarily the safest or sanest, and there are things I just don't care about as much as other parents. As I was driving to a friend's house this weekend, I was thinking about my shameful parenting secrets, and thought I'd lay them out there for all to see. I'm not sure why I feel compelled to do this, but I do. Feel free to contribute your own in the comments (anonymously, if you must). I'm also going to make a list of the things I care about perhaps more than I should or feel I do particularly well. It's all about balance, right?
Snick's Shameful Parenting Truths
1. I drive like Mario Andretti, even with my kids in the car. I drive too fast, I tailgate, and I swear at other drivers. I try not to, but then all a sudden, there I am, passing on the right at great speed.
2. In the same vein, I bought my carseats used, and I feel just fine about that. I even let my kids wear big, puffy jackets in their carseats. The seats are very well installed and secure, and I buckle the kids in tight, but I'm just not a stickler for having the newest, highest-rated, most expensive carseat.
3. I'm not rushing off to buy plastic toys from China, but the whole lead paint scare does not actually cause me that much concern.
4. As mentioned in fair number of recent posts, I yell more than I'd like to.
5. I get up at 6:15 a.m. or so. My kids get up at 7:00 a.m. At the earliest. Lots of times, they are awake before me, and lots of times they are not very happy for the last fifteen minutes or so that they wait, but I need that time in the morning and even though they are unhappy, they aren't in danger or pain or anything, so they can wait. Sometimes they have to wait until 7:15 a.m. or so while I drink some tea and catch a bit of the news. It's really better for all of us if I take the time in need in the morning.
6. When I was pregnant, I ate lots of tuna.
7. I won't tell you how often in the past few weeks the kids have eaten this for dinner: cheese pizza, peas, and banana. They like it, and I don't like fighting at dinnertime.
8. Sometimes I wish my kids liked to watch TV. I'm sure they will like it later in life, but for now they are not at all interested and there are sometimes evenings where I long to put them in front of a 30 minute video and just veg out myself.
9. I let Maddie and Riley eat whole grapes and play with small toys that are probably choking hazards. Supervised, of course, but still.
10. I keep my house really cold. Some people think kids need a warm house, but not this mama.
11. I don't feel a bit of remorse or guilt about working out of the house. I have absolutely no desire to be a full-time stay-at-home mom. It would not be a good choice for me at all.
12. When I go out for an evening sans kids, or if I'm gone or an overnight etc., I miss them and think about them, but hardly obsessively. I enjoy that time for myself, don't feel guilty about it, and don't feel "incomplete" when the twins aren't with me. It's always good to get back to them, but it's also good to get away.
13. I let a lot of "teachable moments" go right on by. Sometimes, I just don't have the energy.
Things I'm Proud Of
1. My kids eat healthy, mostly organic food. Perhaps not as varied as I'd sometimes like (see above), but I home-cook most of what they eat and they get tons of fresh fruit. I'm a little obsessed with the home-cooked kids' food.
2. Maddie and Riley are really good about going to bed. They know their routine and they love their beds. I worked hard to get that set, and it has served us well.
3. I believe in vaccination, but will only let the kids get the ones without thimerosal.
4. I talk about my emotions with the twins a lot, even the ugly ones.
5. We get out and do a lot, see a lot of friends, and go new places. We all love to be outside.
6. I try to model good behavior to them regarding exercise, eating, and taking care of the earth.
7. The twins come first. Period. When I'm getting ready to go out for a short trip, looking ahead to the weekend, or thinking about long-term life plans, my first question is always, "Will that work for Maddie and Riley? Is this a good decision for the twins?" I take care of myself, but I do that within the context of taking care of them. (Slight oxymoron given the list of shameful secrets above, but I trust you smarties in the computer to know what I mean.)
So, what are your secrets? What are your strengths? Share.